As I am on a complete fucking rampage after “my biggest fan” Carlos (who I have previously never heard of) reported me to Instagram for NO REASON because he is a giant incel and didn’t like the fact that I am married (YES - this happens), I am going to give you a lecture about CONSENT, because that is what everything in this industry ultimately boils down to.
I categorically do not consent to this kind of behaviour from people who call themselves fans, because they are invariably not fans. I prefer the term “basement wanker” to describe these people, as they all live in their mum’s figurative basement jerking off into a hypothetical baked potato (this is how I will forever imagine them and you will not change my mind on this). To have someone act so pathetically because their ego is as thin as cheap toilet paper, is frankly a joke. As content creators, we are discriminated against and have so little power on social platforms as it is, so the fact that the same platforms give these pathetic little wankers - and the real people causing harm - so much power is an even bigger joke. Surely their A.I. is powerful enough now that they can spot a cry-wanking incel aggressively pushing the report button a mile off!? Or maybe they just don’t fucking care. Social media providers are the purveyors of New Puritanism (TM) after all. God forbid a woman (or anyone) should want to be objectified. We deserve everything we get, right? WRONG.
OBJECTIFICATION CAN BE CONSENSUAL
But you see, the world is a funny place where you know, EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT. Just because you like to keep your private parts in a locked up case, only to be seen by one exclusive person under the cover of moonlight, doesn’t mean everyone else is like this. As long as something is LEGAL and CONSENSUAL it has no bearing on the lock-and-key-Karens of this world and while pretty much everyone hates being wolf-whistled in the street (not that it happens nowadays) objectification CAN be consensual.
I trade in what I call consensual objectification, wherein I create a fantasy world for people (mostly men) to participate in, via a paid platform. I invite people in for a fee and say to them that it is okay to look, to participate in this fantasy, and it is okay to objectify me in this (very specific and pre-agreed) way, then every few days on that platform I create a new fantasy storyline for my subscribers to participate in, ad infinitum. This is what I do. It’s my job and it pays very well.
Consensual objectification is like any exchange of skills, for example, if you were to work as a builder, or a cleaner, you consent to the exchange of money for your physical labour. Or if you were to work in an office, you are being paid for mental labour (some might say torture). EVERY JOB IS LIKE THIS. But, for some reason, whenever sex or sexiness is involved people get incredibly butt hurt. Because sex or sexiness is something that people should give “for free” - despite this never really being the case in any form of modern civilisation. It is an ideological dispute, based on people having views about other people’s lives that they absolutely have no business having, not understanding that what a person likes and views as moral differs from person to person.
The most common defence for “moral” views is that people can be forced into sex work, but people can be forced into ANY kind of work, and ANY workplace can be unpleasant. Heck I had a worse time and received more sexual harassment working a legit job as a spa manager than I do now. Do you think supposedly feminist anti sex work campaigners would care about that? Nope.
The key to consensual objectification is in its name. I very much fucking consent to being objectified in certain ways. HOWEVER, consent is still needed at every stage of any exchange. Consent is a conversation and at any stage it can be revoked. I may consent to being objectified in certain ways but it does not mean I consent to ALL objectification, especially if it has not been pre-agreed or is in a way I have specifically ruled out.
So there we go, in any relationship - whether it is in real life or online - consent is important, and fans you cannot plead ignorance on this. Because let's face it, fans you are becoming a problem also.
FANS - WE HAVE A PROBLEM
So not only do sexy content creators have to contend with the entire online world wanting to erase us from existence, but we have to also contend with fan bases that are becoming more and more toxic as time goes on. But of course, we are not supposed to talk about this, because our fans are what fund us and it is this sometimes healthy (sometimes not) relationship that one should never criticise or question - which is why it has gotten so bad. Creators are too scared to say anything, because it directly affects our income.
But fans HAVE changed. Rather than being the passive mass of cheerleaders, well wishers, and the occasional laminator (don’t ask) of ten or fifteen years ago, fan bases have evolved into seething masses of entitlement helmed by a few bad apples/giant babies that cry and do abusive things when things don’t go their way. While creators know that the majority of their fans are most likely good, due to the anonymity of social and paid platforms it is near impossible to tell the good from the bad fans. Creators are then stuck in a losing battle where if they say nothing they have a shitty work environment that breeds mental health problems, and if they stand up for themselves they become the target of hate and abuse.
Give any mass group anonymous power online and they will quickly turn nasty - I think it’s the first law of the internet or some shit. There is a power imbalance inherent in paid platforms where fans know who we are, but we have no idea who they are and this is breeding increasingly more abusive behaviour. As a creator, there is no moderator. Despite being incredibly clear on my levels and what I will/won’t do, I am still asked to do gross, abhorrent, and frankly illegal things, by “fans” who get a kick out of offending. This is not “part of the job”, it is abusive behaviour and should be called out for what it is.
It is not okay for fans to act like this.
SO WHAT CAN WE DO?
CREATORS - At present, fuck all, sadly. Aside from being hyper vigilant and enforcing your levels, we are very much at the bottom of the pile in this particular conundrum.
PLATFORMS - Platforms need to be seen to be doing more to protect their creators, as in my eyes they have created this bad-apple-baby-monster. It is not enough for platforms to ban illegal words - they have to actively enforce and ban the users who repeatedly ask for illegal content, rather than punishing creators for receiving requests that they have no control over. They need to do more to counteract content theft and they also need to bring in some kind of Trip Advisor style rating system for fans, so that failing knowing who they are we can collectively know if a fan is good or bad. I also don’t think fan platforms should be anonymous but that’s another argument for another time.
FANS - Fans, this one is very much on you. It is up to you to be better. It is not enough to claim to be one of the “good guys” - you have to be active in stomping out the bad guys, the bad apples and the whiny babies who sit on forums being vile and sharing the content that you paid good money for! It is these very vocal few who are destroying the creator/fan relationship and ruining it for everyone, and ultimately everyone will lose as they will drive the creators you want to see out of the industry… and then what?
You also need to remember that you are talking to the object of your affection direct and act accordingly. When talking to a creator, think about CONSENT. Just because it is okay to objectify a creator in one way does not mean it is okay to objectify them (or another creator) in another way if that other way has not been discussed beforehand. It’s like going to a fetish party, with any specific request you have to ask first, and if you know that request is illegal - perhaps it’s best that you don’t ask, hmm?
Just a thought.